Below are our rankings of first base entering the 2019 season. The list was last updated on January 21, 2019.
1. Freddie Freeman (ATL) The only question mark is the dip in homers, which I’m willing to bet will bounce back closer to thirty. He even found a way to swipe ten bases. It’s time for a new #1 at First!
2. Anthony Rizzo (CHC) He’ll make it five consecutive 100+ RBI seasons in 2019. The easiest 100 RBI’s you’ll ever purchase.
3. Paul Goldschmidt (STL) The change of venues combined with the fact that the double-digit stolen bases are now likely a thing of the past, pushes Goldy down from his perennial spot at the top. It was a great run.
4. Cody Bellinger (LAD, OF-81) 25 homers, 76 RBI, 14 stolen bases, and a .260 BA in a sophomore slump year, isn’t all that bad.
5. Matt Olson (OAK) He’s coming off a 29 homer season as a 24-year-old. If any first base type (other than Joey Gallo) is to approach the 40 homer mark in 2019, it could very well be Matt Olson.
6. Jose Abreu (CWS) After four remarkably consistent seasons he spent a good chunk of 2018 nicked up and the final numbers reflected that fact. A mulligan is in order.
7. Joey Votto (CIN) He has to hit more than 12 homers in 2019. The question is, heading into his age-36 season, how much can we reasonably expect?
8. Matt Carpenter (STL, 3B-76) The arrival of Paul Goldschmidt forces Matt Carpenter to the hot corner. Can Carpenter handle a full season at that physically demanding position?
9. Edwin Encarnacion (SEA) Pencil in another 30-100 season. Just make sure to have someone available to roster in his place for April.
10. Jesus Aguilar (MIL) On the surface, that 35-108 season looks great. Digging a bit deeper, the second half 11-38 is far from awe-inspiring. A year from now, will 2018 be looked upon as an outlier?
11. Joey Gallo (TEX) 40 homers. Check! .220 BA. Check!
12. Miguel Cabrera (DET) He’s now heading into his age-36 season and the memories of those monster seasons are fading quickly. If he can stay healthy, and that’s a big if, you can’t rule out another trip down memory lane.
13. Max Muncy (LAD) Pray that Cody Bellinger plays a ton of games in the Dodger outfield or that Muncy adapts well at second base.
14. Ian Desmond (COL) He was one of only ten players in all of baseball to go 20-20 in 2018.
15. Carlos Santana (CLE) Bump him up a couple spots in OBP Leagues. Down in BA formats.
16. Eric Hosmer (SD) The next seven years better prove to be much better than the first.
17. Justin Smoak (TOR) He couldn’t repeat that monster 38 home runs from 2017, but still managed 25 homers and a decent .350 OBP.
18. Jurickson Profar (OAK) We finally witnessed a healthy season from the former top prospect and the rewards made the wait worthwhile. Now an “A”, he’ll be adding 2B to that multi-position eligibility in 2019.
19. Ryan Zimmerman (WAS) He can still hit them hard, (2’nd to Aaron Judge in Hard-Hit %) he just can’t stay healthy. Pairing him with Matt Adams is a wise choice.
20. Yulieski Gurriel (HOU) For all the griping about the lack of power (13 HR), he still managed to hit for a .291 BA and drive in 85 runs in the powerful Houston offense.
21. Josh Bell (PIT) The underlying stats all looked good. The results last season, not so much. As a late-round option, there is considerable upside potential.
22. Jake Bauers (CLE) In his first half-season in the bigs he hit 11 homers, drove in 48 RBI, and swiped six bags. He also compiled a lowly .201 BA and .316 OBP. In 2219 Minor League at-bats he hit for a .276 BA and excellent .361 OBP. There are better days ahead.
23. C.J. Cron (MIN) One of only five hitters at first to hit 30 or more homers last year and he wasn’t good enough to remain a Ray?
24. Ryan O’Hearn (KC) Don’t let the 12 homers in only 149 at-bats fool you, but the history of mid-20’s power on his Minor League resume makes for a decent late round option.
25. Jay Bruce (SEA) If he had to do it all over again, Bruce would have probably added Seattle to his five-team no-trade list.
26. Brandon Belt (SF) His best chance for success is to get out of San Francisco. He has three years and $48 million left on his current contract. The odds of him achieving success are slim.
27. Trey Mancini (BAL) Mid-twenties power guarantees him a bobblehead night in Baltimore.
28. Marwin Gonzalez (FA) Was 2018 a down year or was 2017 the outlier? I’m betting on 2017 being the outlier, but Gonzalez ability to play all over the field should land him a decent contract this off-season.
29. Yonder Alonso (CWS) He’s no Matt Davidson. His principal asset on the South Side could be in helping to procure the services of his brother-in-law.
30. Niko Goodrum (DET) There is no such thing as a bad rum.
And the rest…
31. Ryon Healy (SEA)
32. Albert Pujols (LAA)
33. Luke Voit (NYY)
34. Tyler White (HOU)
35. Ronald Guzman (TEX)
36. Mitch Moreland (BOS)
37. Greg Bird (NYY)
38. Peter Alonso (NYM)
39. Jose Martinez (STL)
40. Chris Davis (BAL)
41. Wilmer Flores (ARZ)
42. Matt Adams (WAS)
43. Hunter Dozier (KC)
44. Nate Lowe (TB)
45. Justin Bour (LAA)
46. Rowdy Tellez (TOR)
47. Miguel Rojas (MIA)
48. John Hicks (DET)
49. Eric Thames (MIL)
50. Bobby Bradley (CLE)
51. Steve Pearce (BOS)
52. Christian Walker (ARZ)
53. David Freese (LAD)
54. Dan Vogelbach (SEA)
55. Ryan McMahon (COL)
56. Matt Davidson (FA)
57. Logan Morrison (FA)
58. Pete O’Brien (MIA)
59. Tyler Austin (MIN)
60. Pedro Alvarez (MIA)
61. Pablo Sandoval (SF)
62. Neil Walker (FA)
63. Lucas Duda (FA)
64. Mark Reynolds (FA)
65. Garrett Cooper (MIA)
66. Ryder Jones (SF)
67. A. J. Reed (HOU)
68. Dominic Smith (NYM)
69. Josh Naylor (SD)
70. Matt Thaiss (LAA)
71. Jose Osuna (PIT)
72. Brandon Dixon (DET)
73. Brad Miller (FA)
74. Austin Slater (SF)
75. Adrian Gonzalez (FA)
76. Hanley Ramirez (FA)
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